November 2007

For those without health insurance everything is a lot more difficult. Fortunately, some central Illinois communities have free health clinics.

In Bloomington, BroMenn Family Health Clinic and the Community Health Clinic fill the gap for the uninsured and underinsured.
In Peoria, Heartland Community Health Clinic provides healthcare for people without insurance.
In Champaign, there was a recent front page article in the News Gazette highlighting the Champaign County Christian Health Center. A group of local churches and businesses have put the clinic together for those without insurance.

If anyone else knows of other resources please let me know.


McLean County (Bloomington, Illinois area) has started a prescription drug discount card. It is supposed to save residents an average of 20 percent. The program targets the uninsured and underinsured. The card is free and requires no enrollment form. You can call 877-321-2652 or go to

People who have disputed workers compensation claims often cannot get medical treatment unless they have group insurance. This program may help with medications at least. If you live in Peoria, Champaign, or Springfield you can check with your county governments since many of them are participating in the discount drug card program.

Workers’ Compensation in Illinois does not pay you for pain and suffering. The legislative compromise years ago was that the injured worker did not have to prove negligence on his employer’s part to recover and in turn the injured worker was not entitled to pain and suffering damages.

The injured worker is entitled to what is called permanent partial disability, defined as a certain number of weeks times 60 percent of your average weekley wage.
You are also entitled to payment of your medical bills and 2/3 of your average weekly wage for the time you are off work.

If you have a Workers’ Compensation case in Central Illinois- Peoria, Bloomington, Springfield or Champaign, call me to discuss what your case may be worth.

The Chairman of the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission is running for Circuit Court Judge in Madison County Illinois. The Chairman runs the Commission and sometimes decides cases at the appeal level. If elected Judge he would not leave the Commission until the end of 2008. The effect would be limited in terms of the way cases are decided. The Chairman to a limited extent drives the agenda for legislation and how fast cases move. The bottom lines is that I do not think a change in the Chairman will speed up or slow down how fast cases will move or whether decisions become more liberal or conservative.

I just had a Workers’ Compensation trial today for a client who wanted open medical benefits. He had a hand injury and was concerned that at some point in the future he would need medical treatment. The insurance companies want you to settle the case so everything closed out. Good for them. Not so good for you. When you settle, all future medical is your responsibility.

The trial takes a little more work but it preserves your rights to future medical benefits. It is not a perfect system, however, it is the only way to protect your opportunity to get medical benefits. You receive your money and keep your medical in play.

Any questions call Dirk at 309-827-4371 regarding Workers’ Compensation claims in Bloomington, Springfield, Peoria, Pontiac, Decatur and Champaign, Illinois.